Outdoors + Nature

Off the Grid

by Sarah Tuff

BELIZE

The hideout: A rosewood and thatch cabana at the Cotton Tree Lodge, between the Moho river and the southern jungles of Belize (view slideshow).

Low-tech lowdown: You're swinging in a hammock, admiring the placid Moho river, sampling the Mayan chocolate bar you made earlier in the day, and contemplating a soak in the Jacuzzi tub. Off the grid? This is off the hook. While this eco-lodge eschews energy-guzzling excess in favor of solar power, organic foods, and reforestation, that planet-protecting ethos doesn't get in the way of guests' fun or comfort. The ten cabanas include flush toilets and hot water; the bar and restaurant prepare tropical drinks and seafood dishes.

Your new "to do" list:
• Go kayaking, bird-watching, or horseback riding
• Attend a tortilla-making workshop
• Peer at stalactites and stalagmites in Tiger Cave, a Mayan ceremonial site

The road less traveled: Land at the Belize International Airport in Belize City for a connection to Punta Gorda, then travel by boat 15 miles along the coast and up the Moho river to the Cotton Tree Lodge.

Don't forget: Sturdy water shoes. On Mondays and Fridays, Cotton Tree guides take guests cave-swimming.

Cotton Tree Lodge
Tel: 501 670 0557
Doubles from $139

NEXT: The shores of Africa >

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Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.

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